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Setting the bar for sustainable healthcare

Four years on from becoming New Zealand’s first net carbon zero hospital, Forté Health continues to set the bar for sustainable healthcare.    

Forté Health’s net carbon zero journey started in 2019 with the setting of three emissions targets to be achieved by 2026. Forté Health achieved two of these targets last year, and is working hard on the third. 

Its efforts have resulted in a 16% decrease in the total carbon footprint compared to the base year of 2020, exceeding its 2023 goal of 9%. 

The waste per patient has decreased by 10%, carbon emitted per patient reduced by 24%, and emissions from electricity have been lowered by 21%.  

Forté Health CEO, Rachel Hillyer, says the great results are down to the combined efforts of the whole Forté Health team.  

“Sustainability is at the core of everything we do at Forté Health. We’re 100% committed to minimising our environmental impact because we know it's essential to looking after our patients, people and planet.” 

Since it was established, Forté Health has put a sustainability lens over every aspect of its business, exploring every possible way they can better look after the environment.  

Rachel says that while they celebrate their success and hard efforts, the work isn’t over yet. 

“The Sustainability Team keep striving to reduce carbon emissions and maintain our net carbon zero status.” 

In the last 12 months, the team has implemented new practices that have helped Forté Health reach its target.  

From sustainability education being included in new staff orientation to virtual meeting attendance to changing to carbon neutral, FSC-certified paper, the many actions are adding up.  

25 kg of clothing has been donated by staff to Dress for Success, and a load of bras shipped to Pacific Nations as part of Project Uplift. Leftover food from staff lunches is donated to a local Men’s Shelter in Christchurch, and theatre socks are laundered and donated to charities and local schools.  

Giving back to the local community, as well as abroad, is an important hospital-wide focus. 

Rachel says climate change is very much at the forefront, and Forté Health has a responsibility to look after the planet. 

“We’re proud to be showing real leadership in sustainability in New Zealand. We’re showing that hospitals and healthcare can operate in ways that are better for our people and our planet. Every decision we make impacts the future.”